THE EUROPEAN UPCONVERSION NETWORK
From the Design of Photon-Upconverting Nanomaterials to Biomedical Applications : COST CM1403
New assay formats and applications will be developed. Intrinsically referenced signal detection principles will be investigated
Major objectives of WG4
Upconversion nanomaterials (UCNMs) are well suited as reporters for point-of-care tests because the upconversion luminescence can be measured free from background even in more complex sample materials such as whole blood. The turnaround time of the assay from sampling to readout is shortened because many sample preparation and purification steps are avoided. Both, heterogeneous and homogeneous immunoassays will be developed based on optimised UCNMs. In addition, UCNMs will be applied in multianalyte bioarray applications.
Chemo- and biosensors
UCNMs will be used to develop immunoassays for monitoring bacterial toxins and mycotoxins. The UCNMs will be utilised for the design of nanoprobes for the background-free and ultrasensitive detection of small molecule chemical analytes such as pH, pO2, glucose, Ca2+ or other ions. Such probes will be designed by combining suitable molecule/ion sensitive fluorophores as energytransfer acceptors with UCNMs. Decay kinetics of different emission bands and different excitation wavelengths: rise times and decay times.
Encoding schemes for multiplexed analyte detection
The multiple narrow emission bands of UCNMs enable the multiplexed detection of diagnostically relevant analytes. This unique feature of UCNMs will be further exploited by combining the encoding schemes and spectral multiplexing with suspension or solid phase bio-array technologies.
Fluorescence imaging and microscopy
The UCNMs produced and characterised in WG 1 and WG 2 will be studied as reporters for both microscopic analysis of cells and in vivo imaging. UCNM conjugates will be used to identify and trace membrane-bound or intracellular molecules in living cells. Far-red luminescent UCNMs (e.g. NaYF4:Yb,Tm) will be selected to provide minimal scattering and high contrast. Time-gated measurement will be developed and exploited in particular for Forster Resonant Energy Transfer (FRET)- and sensor applications.
Single molecule applications
Single molecule FRET experiments have enabled to characterise the conformations, dynamics and interactions of labelled nucleic acids and proteins. Biomolecules will be labelled with UCNM as the FRET donor and a classical fluorophore as the acceptor. Based on the single molecule instrument developed in WG3, the dynamics of various protein/nucleic acid interactions will be investigated. Additional developments will exploit the signal multiplexing capabilities of UCNM.
Dr. María José Marín
School of Chemistry
University of East Anglia
Norwich Research Park
NR4 7TJ, Norwich, UK
Email: M.Marin-Altaba @ uea.ac.uk
Dr. Thomas Hirsch
Institut für Analytische Chemie, Chemo- und Biosensorik
93040 Regensburg, Germany
Email: thomas.hirsch @ ur.de
The working group achievements :
Participation in dissemination meetings supported by COST or which acknowledged COST:
Chair: dr Hans Gorris (University of Regensburg, Germany)
Vice-Chair: prof.Tero Soukka (University of Turku, Finland)
COST Science Officer: Dr. Lucia Forzi (Bruseels, Belgium)
STSMs Manager: dr hab. Artur Bednarkiewicz (PAS & WCB EIT+, Poland)
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